Obama: Out of Both Sides of his Mouth.
By Kevin Probst
President Obama wants it both ways.
President Obama and his staff adopted a strategy to hush and smear Rush Limbaugh and Fox News. Unlike his predecessor, Obama identified his enemies and tempted them into a public mud wrestling contest. To no one's surprise, Rush Limbaugh and Fox News were quick to accommodate.
Obama's House communications Director Anita Dunn told CNN in October of 2009 that Fox News "operates almost as either the research arm or the communications arm of the Republican Party." And what of CNN? I'm sure she thought the creation of Ted Turner was a bastion of fair and open-mindedness.
Nearly a year later the feud continued as Obama took a clear shot at Fox News in an interview with Rolling Stone Magazine: "You had folks like Hearst who used their newspapers very intentionally to promote their viewpoints. I think Fox is part of that tradition. It is part of the tradition that has a very clear, undeniable point of view." And what does he think of CNN, MSNBC , and ABC News? Do they not promote a "very clear, undeniable point of view"?
Obama went on to declare Fox News the enemy of the mass of American people, "It's a point of view that I think is ultimately destructive for the long-term growth of a country that has a vibrant middle class and is competitive in the world." His assumption is that the majority of American's will dutifully accept his statement as messianic truth. He then crams this criticism down the throats of Americans to elbow depth by offering a reasonable but not an exclusive rationale for the existence of Fox News; "…as an economic enterprise, it's been wildly successful. And I suspect that if you ask Mr. Murdoch what his number one concern is, it's that Fox is very successful." Duh! Are viewers of Fox News supposed to dump them because they desire success and economic profit??
In January of 2010 Obama could no longer hide his irritation. Republican legislators refused to feed at the bunk of his $825 billion stimulus plan. The wall retaining the President's frustration sprung a leak through which his suppressed arrogance seeped out, "I won. I'm the president." Surprisingly his staff and supporters didn't spontaneously break out singing, "Nah nah nah nah hey hey hey goodbye?!?"
In a blatant display of Pecksniffian pretense, Obama reached for his other face and declared to the graduates of the University of Michigan in May of 2010, "…the practice of listening to opposing views is essential for effective citizenship. It's essential for our democracy." If he is so committed to fairness in the media why has he conducted a war on conservative media?
The White House strategy to attack Rush Limbaugh continued at U of M. "If you're a fan of Glenn Beck or Rush Limbaugh, try reading a few columns on the Huffington Post website." Obama had scolded Republicans earlier in the year, "You can't just listen to Rush Limbaugh and get things done." Obama's strategists would have done well to listen to the advise of fellow liberal Susan Estrich who was not so blinded by hatred she couldn't reason, "Trying to beat him at his own game when your own game is played by a different set of rules is a losing proposition." (1) Barry, Bill, Hillary and Al are all constrained by the fact their livelihood depends on their skills as seasoned politicians. Rush is under no such constraints and he capitalizes on that.
Obama would do well to study his Democratic predecessor, John F. Kennedy. In a speech to the American Newspapers Association on April 27th, 1961, he declared, "Without debate, without criticism, no Administration and no country can succeed -- and no republican survive. That is why the Athenian lawmaker Solon decreed it a crime for any citizen to shrink from controversy. And that is why our press was protected by the First Amendment -- the only business in America specifically protected by the Constitution -- not primarily to amuse and entertain, not to emphasize the trivial and sentimental, not to simply 'give the public what it wants' -- but to inform, to arouse, to reflect, to state our dangers and our opportunities, to indicate our crises and our choices, to lead, mold, educate and sometimes even anger public opinion."
Is it not a display of shocking juvenility when the President of the United States perceives Fox News and Limbaugh as his enemies and dedicates his time attempting to preserve his own political career rather than fighting the true enemies of America and preserving his country!?!
1. Rush Limbaugh: An Army of One by Zev Chafets (page 149)
Kevin Probst - Is a teacher of Apologetics and History at Calvary Christian School and Associate Pastor of Crosspointe Nazarene Church church in Columbus, Georgia.